Last week was a bad week for Marquette men’s soccer. They got outscored in two losses by a combined score of 10-2.
This week has started out differently to say the least.
The Griffin Jende Show launched things off quickly on Tuesday night at Valley Fields as the redshirt junior forward scored his first two collegiate goals ever in the first 20 minutes as Marquette went on to beat Green Bay by a final of 6-1. Marquette is now 5-5-1 on the year with nothing but Big East matches left in front of them.
It was the first ever career start for Jende, who had made just four appearances for Marquette before this season and just two appearances in 2019 before Tuesday night. It was clear that he had the green light from head coach Louis Bennett, as his goal in the sixth minute was actually his second shot of the night. His first career goal came by way of excellent setup play by Christian Marquez and Alex Mirsberger, both of whom were credited with assists on the play.
The lead was great, of course, and it was good to see Marquette get off to a good start with an early goal after the whatever that was last week. Luka Prpa was the launching point for goal #2 on the night, sending in a free kick right about at the 15 minute mark after Connor Alba drew a foul outside the box. It wasn’t officially an assist for Prpa — that would come later — but as the ball careened around after he sent it in, Manuel Cukaj poked in MU’s second goal of the night and what would eventually turn into the game-winner.
Less than three minutes later, Patrick Seagrist chipped a ball forward that Jende ran up behind and sent home for the 3-0 lead. It was on just the seventh shot of the game for the Golden Eagles, and Green Bay had yet to attempt even one, so I think we can say things were going pretty well.
That 3-0 lead held up til halftime, and the floodgates opened after that. Cukaj headed home a Prpa free kick for his second goal of the night in the 52nd minute, and less than three minutes later, Seagrist did the same for a corner kick from Josh Coan. 5-0 Golden Eagles, and we hadn’t even hit the hour mark.
Green Bay would end the clean sheet in the 75th minute when Andre Baires converted a penalty kick after a foul by Gabe Kash in the box. MU still got to finish with a five goal margin because Marquez got a goal of his own with just 31 seconds remaining to make it 6-1. It’s the first time since a 6-0 win over Valparaiso in 1994 that Marquette has tallied six goals in a game.
How about some postgame remarks from Griffin Jende, the hero of the day, courtesy of GoMarquette.com?
The man of the match, Griffin Jende (@griffony31). The redshirt junior started his first-ever collegiate game tonight and netted a brace.— Marquette Soccer (@marquettesoccer) October 9, 2019
He talks about what went well for his team against Green Bay. pic.twitter.com/8QjfPiD8Oh
Up Next: As mentioned above, it’s nothing but Big East contests for the Golden Eagles from here forward. They resume conference play on Saturday night when they visit Providence. The Friars are 7-4-0 on the season and they match Marquette with a 1-2-0 mark in league play thus far. It’s a pivotal match to see who can stay in contention for one of the top six spots and a berth in the conference tournament.